Norwich City Under-21s goalkeeper Archie Mair says the Canaries’ 3-1 defeat to Portsmouth on Saturday was an important learning curve for the players, who have one full rest day before travelling to Newcastle on Monday.
Mair made a plethora of saves but with City unable to convert most of their chances at the other end, it was Pompey who took all three points in the Leasing.com Trophy group stage match.
canaries.co.uk: You were certainly kept busy today. What was your view of the game?
AM: Both teams had a lot of chances. We had a good few ourselves, but I obviously had a lot of action at different stages throughout the game, so I needed to be switched on. Portsmouth took some of their chances in the first half and took an early one in the second half, so that kind of killed us a bit. We didn’t take most of ours so that put us behind in the game.
canaries.co.uk: You showed good distribution, drop-kicking the ball with pace to counter. Is that something the coaches encourage you to do?
AM: I’m encouraged to do it if I get the chance to. I’d caught the ball from a corner, looked up and saw Aidan Fitzpatrick. I know how quick he is, so I just thought I’d play it in behind for him to chase onto. It got us further up the pitch and I think we won a throw-in deep in their half from that, so I’ll do it if it’s on.
canaries.co.uk: What about the experience of playing men’s football at Fratton Park?
AM: It was really good. I’ve not had a lot of experience of men’s football, so to play at this stadium is a learning curve. There were plenty of fans and experienced players, so it was a really good experience that can only help us all.
canaries.co.uk: Attention turns to Newcastle United now on Monday in the Premier League 2. Playing regularly is what men’s football is all about, isn’t it?
AM: Exactly, yeah. The boys will need to recover well and be ready for Newcastle. I’m sure some people will still be sore on Monday, but we all need to dig in. We should be fit enough to manage to do that.